Thursday, July 16, 2009

A look back at the first half, by Cliff Claven

With the second half of the season about to begin tomorrow, teams licking their wounds, gathering game plans, rearranging the rotations, & taking a look back at what did and didn't work in the first half. While the Giants do the same, I thought we could take a look into what turned out to be a terrific first half by any standard and see if we can figure out what to expect in the second half:

I think we'll find some pleasant surprises here...

First the obvious, Team stuff...

-At 49-39, the Giants hold the 2nd best record in the NL and 5th best record in baseball. 88 games into the season is slightly over halfway, but that record puts them on pace for a finish at 90-72. That would be their best record since 2004.
-At .262, the team BA ranks 13/30 in MLB, & 5/16 in the NL
-At .393, the miserable team SLG ranks 26/30 in MLB, & 13/16 in the NL
-The OBP is even worse, at .312, it ranks 28/30 & 15/16
-Surprisingly, both the Mets & Pirates have hit fewer HR's thus far.
-The team is 20th in baseball in total SB's, 15th in doubles, and 8th in triples
-Not surprisingly, the Giants are LAST in BB's received.
-Even with fleet footed Bengie Molina, the Giants have grounded into the 7th fewest double plays this season in the MLB
-The Giants are second in baseball in Sac Fly's, so as much as we make about them not being able to get "that" run in, they are doing a fine job here
-The Giants lead all of baseball with a team ERA of 3.51, CG's with 8, SHO's with 13, OB% of .316 & K's with 694
-They are also 2nd overall in WHIP at 1.27, SLG% at .375, & BAA of .239
-The team fielding% is 10/30 at .985

...then the obvious, Player stuff...

-At 15 HR's, Pablo Sandoval ranks in a tie for 42nd overall, and 18th in the NL
-Andres Torres & Randy Winn are both tied for 18th in Triples with 4. That's good enough for 11th in the NL
-Sandoval is tied for 17th MLB & 7th NL in doubles with 24. Winn & Aaron Rowand are right behind him with 23
-Sandoval has 55 RBI, 31st MLB & 16th NL, but still 30 behind Albert Pujols
-At .964 OPS, Pablo is 8th in the NL & 13th in MLB
-Tim Lincecum & Matt Cain are second in baseball with 10 wins & CG's with 3
-Both Lincecum(2.33) & Cain(2.38) are 3rd & 4th respectively in ERA
-Brian Wilson leads (that's right, LEADS) the NL with 23 saves & is 2nd in MLB
-Timmy is tied for the MLB lead in K's with 149
-Jeremy Affeldt leads the majors in every one's favorite category, Holds, at 19

...and for the Cliff Claven stuff...

-The Giants are 18-7-4 in the series they've played thus far
-Giants are 13-5 when Matt Cain starts, 12-6 behind Tim Lincecum, 10-7 when Randy Johnson takes the ball, 8-10 behind Barry Zito days, 4-10 when Jonathan Sanchez toes the rubber, & 2-1 when Ryan Sadowski pitches.
-Jeremy Affeldt still holds the league lead with 21 2/3 innings scoreless innings
-Giants are 8-3 when Eli Whiteside catches with 4 team shutouts, & the No hitter
-3-0 when Pablo Sandoval catches, all Barry Zito starts
-BTW, when someone not named Bengie Molina is Barry Zito's battery-mate, the Giants are 5-2 in 2009...
-Giants are 46-10 when allowing 4 runs or less
-Giants are 41-16 when scoring 3 runs or more
-Matt Cain & Tim Lincecum have more hits than unlucky Kevin Frandsen
-They also are undefeated in games in which they haven't lost since 1883, tied for the longest active streak ever...OK, just checking you were still reading

It should be one hell of a second half & we'll be right here second guessing every move...stay tuned
-28-18 when Juan Uribe starts


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